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February Skramblings: K2s Revisited, Training Thoughts

eebee's picture

Skate Ramblings, that is. Not trying to coin a cute phrase - but perhaps diluting search results with my pointless drivel. Hey, it's what a blog is for! Some February thoughts on skating, journal-style...

  • Being separated from my speed skates, helmet and gadgetry by about 300 miles, I dug out the ol' K2 rekkies and dared myself to be seen at the park skating on them. To my surprise the K2s had been hoarding an absolutely killer set of bearings. They whirr and whizz just as they should, unlike the molasses ILQ-9's in my speed skates. Perhaps I'm not so sluggish after all. Second surprise is that these are plain old BSB abec 5. Maybe I just took better care of them, and lubed them better 4 years ago. Perhaps the bearings just feel faster because it's easier for me to push with the K2s? Shorter frame, lower to the ground? I won't find that out until I can retrieve my speed skates and swap them out, and believe me I will be doing that ASAP.
  • Talking of taking better care - I noticed the well-used 80mm wheels were worn to a perfect ridge in the middle! No pizza-cutters there. Boy I must've been really diligent back then, rotating my wheels like a good girl.
  • Talking of the middle ridge, I remembered typically wearing down my outside edges first with these rec boots, which I can't do now with my speed boots and 3x100+84 frame. Carving a confident outside edge is a breeze on the K2s! This is making me question why I can't seem to achieve the same on my speed frames, or boots. I think the answer lies in my confidence of steering the shorter-framed skate back out from the underpush. Sometimes the longer speed frames feel like a set of flippers, and I'm not even on 110s!
  • The high boot cuff is giving me a blister on one calf. This never happened when the K2s were all I had. So why now? Blake believes that we learn to skate differently once we get into speed boots. Interesting.
  • So far this year my 'foundation' period has been sporadic at best, but February has brought a few nicer days than January. I'm aiming at 3 x 1 hour-long skates weekdays, with either 2 more hourlongs on the weekends, or one 2+hourer if the occasion presents itself. Nothing majorly hilly, just undulating park trails, or even the flat track. Average speed: about 10mph. Heart rate: 55-75% of max. I'd shoot for more hours and miles, but an 8 hour work day with commute and extra work afterwards, I'm really pushed for time. There comes a point, however, that skating time is the most important thing, because without it work, optimism and social skills aren't possible. 
  • Skate a little lower now: I'm trying to create the habit of bending my knees to the point of clumsiness. The theory behind this is eventually I'll have a more natural-feeling deeper knee-bend. Deeper knee bend = more power, a better quad/glute/ham workout, and better technique. I tried the Nicole Begg elbow-on-thigh, fist-under-chin pose, but I can't skate that low for longer than 30 seconds yet! Blame it on having a long body :-)
  • Still trying the slow but steady Carmichael approach to changing my diet, and how slowly it's going too! I haven't lost any weight but I have gained 3 more pounds! I can't say the extra weight is impeding my skating yet, but then I'm not trying to haul myself up any steep hills, either. I am hoping that if I can skate about 50 miles a week my metabolism will kick back in and take care of this little problem.
  • I got a little panicky when I heard some friends were gonna take advantage of a sunny day and go skate...35 miles! Self-hatred started to kick in about my slacking off since A2A. After about half a day I realized it's really ok: my battered soul and hamstrings needed the gluttony and laziness. I could skate 35 miles right now - it'd just take me 6 hours instead of 3!
Here endeth this month's twaddle. I'd love to hear others' training progress and thoughts!



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